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Remembering Burt Reynolds, movie star with swagger

With his trademark grin and signature mustache, Burt Reynolds was one of Hollywood's biggest box office stars in the late 1970s and early '80s. While the critics rarely took him seriously, the actor made his mark in popular favorites, as well as Oscar-winning films. Reynolds died Thursday at age of 82. Jeffrey Brown reports.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    Finally, tonight remembering actor and screen star Burt Reynolds, who died today.

    As Jeffrey Brown tells us, Reynolds was for years one of the top box office draws worldwide.

  • Actress:

    Did Cledus call you a legend?

  • Burt Reynolds:

    Uh-huh.

  • Jeffrey Brown:

    With his trademark grin, signature mustache and macho swagger, Burt Reynolds was one of Hollywood's biggest stars in the late 1970s and early '80s, appearing in fan favorites like "Smokey and the Bandit" and "Cannonball Run."

    He played jocks in movies like "Semi-Tough," and starred in romantic comedies, including "Starting Over." The critics showed him little love and, often enough, his movies were panned. But his career span more than four decades and included some 100 movies and numerous TV shows.

    Reynolds once told a reporter, "I think I'm the only movie star who is a star in spite of his pictures, not because of them."

  • Burt Reynolds:

    I think the love has gone out of our relationship.

  • Jeffrey Brown:

    His career began on TV, including as a regular character on "Gunsmoke." His move to films and more serious acting credentials got a major boost in 1972 with his performance in "Deliverance."

  • Burt Reynolds:

    Why do you go on these trips with me?

  • Jeffrey Brown:

    Reynolds' off-screen behavior also drew plenty of attention. In 1972, he famously posed nude in "Cosmopolitan," and he dated some of the biggest stars of his time, including Sally Field and Farrah Fawcett. His marriage to Loni Anderson ended in bitter acrimony.

    Often performing his own dangerous stunts, Reynolds dealt with many injuries, and at one point battled an addiction to painkillers. He continued to act at a slower pace as his box office appeal faded. A notable comeback came with "Boogie Nights" in 1997, when he was nominated for an Oscar for his role as a porn film director.

  • Burt Reynolds:

    It is my dream, it's my goal, it's my idea to make a film that the story just sucks them him.

  • Jeffrey Brown:

    Later, he spoke of his ups and downs.

  • Burt Reynolds:

    Not too long before, I was having a rough time. And then this picture came on, and it changed everything.

  • Jeffrey Brown:

    Burt Reynolds died this morning in Jupiter, Florida. He was 82 years old.

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